Article Contributed by gratefulweb | Published on Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Terrapin Flyer will soon embark on its Spring Tour of the western United States. The tour will hit 7 states, 15 shows in 23 days. Terrapin Flyer is a Chicago-based Grateful Dead band performing for the last 25 years with the best musicians in the Grateful Dead extended family of musicians. Previous tours have featured former members of the Grateful Dead: Tom Constanten and Vince Welnick, former Jerry Garcia Band Melvin Seals, and many other prominent musicians. The band has a dedicated following across the United States and is currently enjoying some of their greatest success.

This is in no small part to lead guitarist Josh Olken who is recognized as one of the best guitarists emulating the sound and style of Jerry Garcia. Josh has been performing in Terrapin Flyer for the last 10 years and cut his teeth with Melvin Seals and Tom Constanten who both thought he was a great up-and-coming player in the Grateful Dead scene. Melvin was often impressed enough to comment about how Josh’s tone was so on target with Jerry’s. Also though Josh would play much like Jerry, Melvin recognized that Josh was throwing in classic jazz licks from artists like Coltrane, Miles Davis, and others. Melvin loved playing with Josh at shows, they would often trade licks and you’d see Melvin smiling that familiar smile that lights up any room.

Josh Olken of Terrapin Flyer | Photo by June Jameson

Inputting the influence of other musicians and incorporating it all into a fresh and unique approach that is hauntingly familiar and multidimensional makes Josh such a compelling player to not just other musicians but to Deadheads in general. Terrapin Flyer audiences have been growing steadily since Josh has been in the band as word of mouth spreads about his ethereal playing.

It’s a psychedelic style that gets in your head and tells a story. It’s emotional and complex, similar to what made Jerry Garcia so unique. It’s difficult to emulate and often those who attempt to copy end up with a hollow recreation. Josh can capture that style and that is why so many are recognizing his presence.

You can see Josh and Terrapin Flyer on the band’s Spring Tour starting on April 26 with a special Josh birthday show at the Chop Shop in Chicago. The entire tour is listed below:

4/26 Chop Shop Chicago IL

5/2 Club Fox Redwood City CA

5/3 & 4 Axiom Repertory Theatre Redding CA

5/7 Lost Camp Bar & Grill Kerby OR

5/8 Talent Club Talent OR

5/9 The WOW Hall Eugene OR

5/10 Volcanic Theatre Pub Bend OR

5/11 Showdown Saloon Portland OR

5/14 The Shakedown Bellingham WA

5/15 High Dive Seattle WA

5/16 The Hive Sandpoint ID

5/17 The Wilma Missoula MT

5/18 The ELM Bozeman MT

5/19 The State Room Salt Lake City UT